Family & Education

6 Simple Ways to Celebrate the End of the School Year

BY Barbara Danza TIMEApril 15, 2022 PRINT

For the past few years, crossing the school year finish line has felt like a monumental accomplishment. Whether you’ve homeschooled or taken a more standard route, completion is truly worth celebrating.

Here are six simple ways to mark the occasion with your family.

Special Breakfast

Pull out all the stops for a special last-day breakfast. Whether that means bacon and eggs, french toast, pancakes with sprinkles, or whatever would thrill your particular crew—a celebratory first meal sets the tone for a special day ahead. Hint: a little prep work the night before can make this doable even on the tightest morning schedules.

Morning Surprise

Choose a focal point in your home to lay out a few surprises for your children to awaken to. In our house, we decorate the dining room table for special occasions, for example. Couple personalized notes celebrating their hard work and accomplishments with simple gifts such as new books to read over the summer, a new beach towel or pair of sunglasses, a sweet stuffed animal, or fresh art supplies. Waking up to a surprise is a delight that makes the whole day feel special.

Print Photos

Our photos don’t get the appreciation they deserve hiding behind our digital devices. Allow appreciation for the special moments through the school year by actually having select photos printed. Whether you simply enjoy a small stack or go all out creating a photo book to commemorate the year (an especially meaningful gesture for homeschoolers), looking back at the year is a valuable exercise. Acknowledge all that your kids have learned, experienced, accomplished, and created.

Out to Dinner

Always a classic, gather the family and go out to dinner to celebrate a job well done. Perhaps the kids get to choose the restaurant, or perhaps your family has a favorite place you love to go to for just such an occasion. Make the most of this precious family time by leaving digital devices tucked away (or better yet, at home) and be present for this fleeting moment of childhood. 

Hit the Road

My personal favorite—kick off summer break with a family getaway. Whether camping out, visiting a national park or historic site, exploring another country, or lounging on a sunny beach—traveling together as a family is a wonderful way to celebrate the successful conclusion of the school year.

When in Doubt—Ice Cream

Perhaps the simplest—and most delicious—way to mark the last day of school is with ice cream. Head out as a family to your favorite creamery to celebrate diligent efforts and the onset of glorious summer.

Barbara Danza
Barbara Danza is a mom of two, an MBA, a beach lover, and a kid at heart. Here, diving into the challenges and opportunities of parenting in the modern age. Particularly interested in the many educational options available to families today, the renewed appreciation of simplicity in kids’ lives, the benefits of family travel, and the importance of family life in today’s society.
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